A weekend of sales

Hi there, just a quick post to let you know that I’m trying a new feature with my Etsy shop and doing a long weekend sale beginning today Thursday December 10th at midnight Paris time until Sunday December 13th 23:00 Paris time. No code needed.

I’m offering -20% off all in stock items and to enjoy the discount just click here – happy shopping 🙂

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Speckled yarn – what is that? Should I do some?

After watching an episode of Susan B Andersons podcast the other day where she showed a skein of speckled yarn I got to do a little research. How do you dye yarn this way? What do the skeins look like? And most importantly how does the yarn knit up?

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It looks quite interesting though some skeins I’ve seen on the internet do not appeal to me at first, actually seeing the yarn knit up changed my mind completely. If you are not familiar with speckled yarn, it’s a yarn that has been hand dyed, randomly I’d say. The dyer will use a droplet counter or a syringe or some other instrument that will enable them to deposit very small amounts of dye here and there on the skein.

I’ve seen that this can be done either with the skein immersed in some water or by laying the wet skein out and painting the dye on and then steaming to set. The yarn can be either totally coloured with next to no white spots or you can leave some or even much white depending on the sort of look you are going for.

There are not that many speckled yarns out there these days and since the technique seems to be a lot of fun, I decided to give it a go and I went ahead and did the second method (laying the skein out, painting and then steaming). I did two skeins and used a multitude of different colours although there are still some white spots. I think maybe by using the immersion method one can get more coverage and less white spots if that is what one is going for.

Here are some pictures of this first ever dye test

yarn dyeing www.knittinginfrance.com  Here the dyeing is done and now my yarn is all wrapped up in film and steaming away to set the colours.

just out of the dye pot www.knittigninfrance.com Just out of the dye pot and cooling down before rinsing and eventually drying. Can you see that there are 2 different skeins side by side? I did two separate colour mixes, just having fun splashing colour all over in whatever colour took my fancy.

I’ve never knitted with a speckled yarn before so I’m quite excited about that and I’m going to keep one of the skeins for me to test knit into socks (like always I know) and then I’m thinking of offering one for sale at a lower price than usual via Instagram! Yes that’s correct via Instagram. I’ve been immersing myself in Instagram lately and I really love that social media platform and I’ve seen that some people use Instagram for special sales and so on and I’d really like to try that out and thought that it would be fun to do so with my first skein of speckled yarn.

So now I just need to read up a bit on how to actually go about this and I’m going to launch the sale tomorrow Sunday May 30th so look out! On Instagram I’m Knitting in France of course so please check out my account if you are also on Instagram:)

Back at home

Hi there, my week in Iceland just flew by and now I’m back at home with hubby and children:)

And speaking of time that flies by, the I Knit Fandango show is in just over a month! I had better get the turbo started! It is always a difficult task to assess the amount of stock to bring to a show and when that show is abroad the task takes on a new dimension as luggage restrictions apply! So I’ve done a fair bit of dyeing yarn and yesterday I did some roving as I want to carry something for spinners as well. I also placed a last minute order with my supplier of undyed yarns because I want to do some kits for the show. I’m planning on 2 shawl kits – 1 knit and 1 crochet, 1 baby kit (knit), and 1 sock kit (knit). And so I purchased the yarn for those and hope I can dive into dyeing those as of the coming weekend. I also purchased some sparkling sock blanks that I look forward to dyeing as that will be the first time I have those with Stellina for added glam’.

Yesterday the weather was gorgeous here in Normandy, France and so I did my dyeing outside in the garden. That is definitely something I’m going to do more of. Not only is it enjoyable for me but I also have more table space AND no one to complain about the “smell” – FYI I have NEVER felt any “smell” of my wet/cooking wool and yarns, but I’m told that is because I’m biased:)

Some pictures for you

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My set up on the garden table

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One side of my dryer rack filled with just dyed roving

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and the other side of the dryer rack also filled with just dyed roving

While in Iceland I finished my second pair of 2 in 1 socks and I also decided that I would do more of those and even try to make my own pattern in order to make some with a bit of lace instead of just plain stockinet. But before launching into that I decided a change was needed so I cast on for a new pair of socks (yes I did say “change” but not “major change”), this time I’m doing them TAAT using the magic loop method. I’m using a yarn that I hand dyed myself and this yarn has long colour changes which explains why one sock is blue and the other reddish on the following picture. I chose the Zigzagular pattern that I found on Ravelry and have heard of online and seen lots of pictures of finished socks. I decided this would be a good fit for a return to magic looping. Here’s what I’ve knit so far

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My progress so far on the ZigZagular socks knit TAAT with my own hand dyed yarn

Upon my return from Iceland I also had a pleasant surprise, my order from Crazy Monkey Creations had finally arrived! For some reason my package went to Israel and spent quite some time there so I had been waiting for over a month for this to arrive. I’m super happy it finally made it and I really look forward to presenting the items to you at the I Knit Fandango show in May. I ordered some blockers for mittens and socks in different sizes and with different motifs and I also ordered some of their electronic knitting counters that can be worn around a finger like a ring. I must try those and I’ll let you know what I think later on. Pics are here:

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Mitten blockers from Crazy Monkey Creations. These are hand made and gorgeous

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Sock blockers from Crazy Monkey Creations, handmade gorgeousness

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And another type of sock blockers from Crazy Monkey Creations. These are all handmade

That’s about all for today. Thank you for stopping by, I hope you enjoyed reading this post and looking at my pictures. I wish you all a wonderful and creative new week. Until next time, Take Care 🙂

Attention everyone! Important information :)

Hi there, I just HAVE to share this with you. Remember my 2 in 1 sock knitting challenge? Well 2 things:

1) I’ve cast on for a new pair

www.knittinginfrance.com And this time I’m using the same yarn- this is actually gradient yarn from the Knitcircus gradient yarn club and as I’m doing the same colour yarn for both I put each ball into a yarn sleeve and not only turned one inside out but also marked them with numbers to be on the safe side!

But I was just wondering if there were more patterns out there for this type of sock knitting and even though I did not find a new pattern I did find a great tutorial and I think I did not share that with you last time so here goes (or if I did, well maybe you didn’t see it last time or if you did you will just have to forgive me for my loss of memory).

There is a tutorial on Knitty, just click here

So do you feel like joining me and making a pair yourself? If not now, maybe we can organise a KAL later on?

Thats all for now, take care and have  a wonderful Friday:)

I did it! I actually FROGGED the whole thing!

Hm, yes unfortunately you did read correctly! Despite my good intentions and your encouragements and advice, I still went ahead and frogged my mitten!

Are you ready? Take a deep breath because it is not pretty

www.knittinginfrance.com   Yikes, the needles are gone!  www.knittinginfrance.com  And here it is, almost totally gone!

So WHAT happened?? Well 2 things actually. 1) I’m stubborn and there just was something that bothered me about the mitten so far. I don’t know exactly what but it just did not feel quite like I wanted it to. And 2) I did actually take the mitten and knit a few more rounds last night and as I was about to call it a night, I tried it on and it felt too big. I’m tall and usually do all my knitting in L but this was too big and I was afraid that if I continued it would not only be too large but too long as well. So I just felt like it was ALL wrong so….I’m sorry for disappointing you but I think the mittens will be all the better for this. I’m convinced that my 2nd try will be THE good one!

I’ll be going to Iceland to visit my mom and family in a few days and the trip from Normandy, France is very long so I’m planning all the knitting I need to take with me both for the actual trip and for the time I’m there. I’m going to do the mittens and hopefully I’ll be able to progress nicely and then I need something that demands less concentration so either socks or the entrelac scarf/stole I showed you the other day. Or maybe all 3! I’m just totally unable to JUST knit 1 thing at a time. I need to have a variety of projects going at the same time and I knit each one in different circumstances. I have the easy peasy for work – when work is slow I can knit between phone calls, I have one medium knit for the tv/evening knits – something interesting without requiring total concentration and then one more intricate knit that I will do when I have the time to just be by myself and knit for a little while and concentrate totally on what I’m doing.

Is this crazy? A sign of my total and utter “obsession” for knitting? My hubby thinks so but I just think this is normal and even vital to my mental health:)

If you share the same “condition” or not, do share with the rest of us by leaving a comment 🙂

Progress and some neon yarns

Hi there and thanks for stopping by:)

Since last time I’ve made some good progress on my first real pair of 2 in 1 socks. I’m now passed the heel turn and working on the gusset decreases. Youpi! This sounds like a homerun! Once the heel is all done with the rest usually follows quickly I think. Here are some pictures for you

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my progress on the 2 in 1 sock knitting challenge

progress on 2 in 1 sock www.knittinginfrance.com

see I’m onto the gusset stitches now

I’m knitting these on my Signature Needle Arts dpn’s that I LOVE! Looking good so far I think.

Now for the dyeing. I told you that this weekend I did some dyeing, mostly Sunday as that was the Day of Women here in France and I thought I deserved some quality time with my yarn and dyes. And as I just got this new neon dye stuff, I of course had to experiment with different methods of dyeing using those. So I did 5 skeins of sock weight yarn and 2 blanks. But I’m also going to show you some pictures of other yarns I dyed recently as well. These have still not been set up for sale in the shop on Etsy – I admit I’m still debating how much of my current dye work should go online and how much should just be set aside for the show in London this coming May. But anyways, some pictures:

hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com These are my 5 sock weight skeins and here you can see how I placed the dyes – I chose to leave lots of white here on most of them

hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com hand dyed yarn www.knittinginfrance.com This is what they look like once I’ve wound them into skeins – I just would them as they were which explains why you can see large “blotches” of colour.

my first time dyeing sock yarn with neon colours www.knittinginfrance.com

My neon coloured sock yarns

here are the same skeins but reskeined. Can you see the difference? They almost don’t look like the same set of skeins don’t you think?

I’m rather satisfied with the results myself and I hope you like what you see too.

 

Here are some more dyes

all new hand dyed yarns by www.knittinginfrance.com

My latest hand dyed yarns

At the top here, you see 2 skeins of Polwarth wool in sock weight that I dyed in stripes – in the middle you have the skeins I dyed for the 2 in 1 sock knitting challenge (see below) only here they have been reskeined – and at the bottom you have 3 skeins of a cashmere blend sock yarn I dyed using a similar technique to the neon dyes and these have also been reskeined.

hand dyed glitter yarn sock weight www.knittinginfrance.com

hand dyed silver stellina yarn in soft vieux rose

hand dyed silver stellina sock yarn by www.knittinginfrance.com

gradient vieux rose hand dyed stellina silver sock yarn

And here you see the yarn that I dyed for the 2 in 1 sock knitting challenge last week

And here you see the cashmere base sock yarn I did last week or the week before that (you see this yarn reskeined in the picture above) and look how amazing the magic of dyeing can be. I love seeing the transformation from the just dyed skeins to the reskeined skeins to the actual knitted socks. I’m also loving the way this yarn knits up which is why I used a similar technique yesterday to dye my neon yarns.

multi colored sock weight cashmere based yarn www.knittinginfrance.com

multi colored yarn

multi colored sock weight cashmere based yarn www.knittinginfrance.com

reskeined multi coloured yarn

multi coloured yarn knit up into socks by www.knittinginfrance.com

my multi coloured yarn knit into socks

 

 

Thats all for today, I must go back to work now. But before I leave you here are some pictures I took from my afternoon at the beach yesterday (yes I know I’m lucky to live in Normandy, France)

IMG_2907 IMG_2906 IMG_2905

Until next time, take care and enjoy your crafting 🙂